As Business Week points out, get ready for the Chinese:
The 2008 Beijing Olympics will doubtless be a gloriously defining moment for China—an international image blast underscoring the mainland’s arrival as an economic power. And perhaps more important for Chinese companies selling everything from booze to bank accounts, it is shaping up to be the marketing opportunity of the decade.
And if you don’t think they are ready, take a look at BW’s 20 Best Chinese Brands. Many of these brands are positioned mostly for the local Chinese market, such as Bank of China, China Construction Bank, China Merchants Bank, insurance giant Ping An, China Mobile, China Telecom and Internet/on-line gaming leader NetEase. But others, such as mobile phone makers ZTE and Gree Electric Appliances (already the world’s largest air conditioner manufacturer), are actively pursuing global markets. Others that didn’t make the top 20 cut, such as Tsingtao Brewery, appliance-maker Haier, DongFeng Motors and Shanghai Automotive Industry, are also moving into the global market. Haier is already becoming a design leader in the US with what Business Week calls a “line of eco-friendly, tech-rich appliances.”
China and other “developing” countries are moving up the value chain – including in design and innovation. Those who think that the US can survive economically simply by living off the royalties from our past great ideas, think again. The I-Cubed Economy is one of relentless innovation. And other nations are working hard to prove they are as good at that game as we are.